About Us

Who are we

The “River City Blues Society” has a great history of bringing the “Blues” to central Illinois. Founded in 1988, we are one of the oldest 501 (C) nonprofit organizations supporting the “Cultural Arts” throughout central Illinois. Our goal is to sponsor and support live “Blues” music throughout central Illinois. We also wish to publicize and support the significant cultural contributions of “Blues” musicians and song writers from around the world. We promote and participate in local “Blues” festivals and competitions. We help sponsor the “Illinois Blues Festival” and the “International Blues Challenge-Road to Memphis Invitational”.

Not so long ago we produced nearly 40 shows in one year! We have sponsored 15 bands in the “International Blues Challange. We are currently working on a Sunday afternoon series consisting of local and national performers. This will provide a platform for new performers as well national acts to show us what they’re made of.

Artists Who Have played the Illinois blues festival

1989

  • Koko Taylor & Her Blues Machine
  • The Kinsley Report w/Big Daddy Kinsey
  • Mighty Joe Young
  • Big Twist & Mellow Fellows
  • Southside Denny & The Skintones
  • Studebaker John & The Hawks
  • Rockin’ Billy & The Rhythm Riot

1990

  • The Nighthawks w/Jimmy Hall
  • Lonnie Brooks
  • Son Seals Blues Band
  • Johnnie Johnson
  • Mojo Stew
  • Hip Pocket

1991

  • Wild Child Gipson
  • Eddie “Chief” Clearwater
  • Studebaker John
  • Mojo Stew
  • Dave Chastain & The Blues Rockers
  • Magic Slim & The Teardrops
  • Hip Pocket
  • Snooky Prior
  • Professor’s Blues Review
  • A. C. Reed
  • Phil Guy
  • Lonnie Mack

1992

  • Elvin Bishop
  • Lonnie Brooks
  • Jimmy Johnson
  • Homogenous Jones
  • Junior Wells
  • Dave Chastain & The Blues Rockers
  • The Burnin’ Chicago Blues Machine
  • The Blue Band
  • Funky Shoes

1993

  • Albert Collins & The Icebreakers
  • A. C. Reed & His Sparkplugs
  • John Hammond
  • Joan Osbourne
  • Bobby’e King & The Ladies Choice
  • Hip Pocket
  • The Tailspinners
  • Shady Blues Band
  • Big Time Sarah
  • Lucky Peterson

1994

  • Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown
  • Lonnie Brooks
  • Lucky Peterson
  • Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings
  • Maurice John Vaugh
  • Tinsley Ellis
  • Bobby’e King & The Ladies Choice
  • Rooster Alley
  • Curtis & The Kicks
  • The Wayne Carter Express

1995

  • Charlie Musselwhite
  • Savoy Brown with Kim Simmons
  • Kenny Neal
  • Duke Tomatoe & The Power Trio
  • Butchie Satterfield
  • Sally Weisenburg & The Famous Sidemen
  • Dave Chastain & The Power Trio
  • Luther “Guitar” Johnson
  • Rooster Alley
  • Lorrie Ann & The 3D Rhythm Band

1996

  • Lonnie Brooks
  • Lucky Peterson
  • Joe Lewis Walker & The Bosstalkers
  • Big Al & The Heavyweights
  • Lorrie Ann & The 3D Rhythm Band
  • Debbie Davies
  • Big Mike Griffin & The Unkown Blues Band
  • Chubby Carrier & The Bayou Swamp Band
  • James Peterson
  • Joanna Conner Band
  • Easy Money

1997

  • Delbert McClinton
  • Kenny Neal
  • C.J. Chenier & The Red Hot Louisiana Band
  • Big Dave & The Ultrasonics
  • Big Al & The Heavyweights
  • Dr. Hector & The Groove Injectors
  • Eddie King
  • Sonny Rhoades
  • 3 In The Pocket
  • Bruce James Band

1998

  • Bobby “Blue” Bland
  • Wayne Toups
  • Matthew Skoller Band
  • Robin Crowe Band
  • Little Charlie & The Nightcats
  • Coco Montoya
  • Chris Cain
  • Bobby’e King & The Ladies Choice
  • Larry McCray
  • Rocky Lawrence
  • Roy Hightower
  • Randy Vincent

1999

  • James Cotten
  • Larry McCray
  • Bernard Allison
  • Judy Page
  • Anson Funderburgh & The Rockets with Sam Meyers
  • Smokin Jo Kubak
  • Benois King
  • Dr. Hector and The Groove Injectors
  • Miranda Louise
  • Smokehouse
  • Peoria Blues Crew
  • Spencer Bohren
  • Fruteland Jackson
  • Johnny Nicholas

2000

  • John Mayall & The Blues Breakers
  • The Fabulous Thunderbirds
  • Deborah Coleman
  • Dangerous
  • The Keller Brothers Band
  • Hip Pocket
  • Matthew Skoller Band
  • Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials
  • Smokin’ James & Arson Squad
  • Catfish Keith
  • Steve Arvey
  • Greg Williams

2001

  • Rod Piazza & The Mighty Flyers
  • Roomful Of Blues
  • Coco Montoya
  • Chubby Carrier & The Bayou Swamp Band
  • Dave Chastain Band
  • Sandra Hall
  • Dave & The Dynamics
  • 4 In The Pocket
  • Roy Ponce Band
  • 6V6
  • Philadelphia Jerry Ricks
  • Tom Nelson
  • Jerry Carsteas
  • Bob King
  • Travis Smith
  • “Buffalo Dan” Soloman
  • Bill Hill
  • Arthur Williams
  • Robert Lohr
  • Elmore James Jr.

2002

  • Little Milton
  • Luther “Guitar Junior” Johnson
  • Chris Anderson Band
  • Johnny Neel
  • Arthur Williams
  • Steve Pierson
  • Jimmy Burns
  • Lloyd Jones
  • E.C. Scott
  • Bill Porter Project
  • Rocky Lawrence
  • Kilborn Alley
  • Scott Ellison

2003

  • Elvin Bishop
  • Michael Burks
  • Robin Crowe Band
  • Molly Nova & The Hawk
  • Maurice John Vaugh
  • Eddie King
  • Kilborn Alley
  • Springfield Shaky
  • Jodi Williams
  • Michael Hill’s Blue Mob
  • Rita Chiarelli
  • Jermine Allison
  • Pete Special
  • Carol Fran
  • King Robinson Band
  • Bill Perry
  • The Breeze Kings
  • Full Circle
  • The Edge
  • Mike Mitchell & The Blewz Dawgz

2004

  • Walter Trout & The Radicals
  • The Tommy Castro Band
  • Carey Bell
  • Rooster Alley
  • Hadden Sayers Band
  • Duke Tomatoe & The Power Trio
  • Cephas & Wiggins
  • River Rats
  • Celtricity
  • The Sally Weisenburg Trio
  • T.V. Blues Band
  • King Robinson & The House Rockers
  • Harry Manx

2005

  • Kenny Neal
  • Chubby Carrier & The Bayou Swamp Band
  • Bryan Lee
  • James Solberg
  • The River Rats
  • Fishbone Willie
  • Lazy Lester with Studebaker John
  • Governor Foreman
  • Motor City Josh
  • Sandra Hall
  • Dave Chastain
  • Donald Kinsey
  • Paul Oscher
  • Kelly Joe Phelps

2006

  • Siegel Schwall Band
  • Tracy Nelson
  • Majic Slim & The Teardrops
  • James Armstrong
  • Jimmy Burns
  • Deitra Farr
  • Liz Mandville Greeson
  • Reverend Payton’s Big Damn Band
  • Mississippi
  • Haley “The Kid” Crouch
  • Cobalt Canopy
  • Motor City Josh
  • Southside Cindy & The Slip-Tones

2007

  • Dave Mason
  • The Radiators
  • Watermelon Slim
  • Big James and The Chicago Playboys
  • Andrew “Junior Boy” Jones
  • Kilborn Alley Blues Band
  • Chuck Ely Band
  • Slick Rick & The Hotlicks
  • King Robinson & The Houserockers
  • After Midnight Blues
  • Sunshine Experience
  • Bobbye’ King & The Ladies Choice

2008

  • Tommy Castro Band with The Legendary R&B Revue, Bernard Allison, Majic Dick, Deanna Bogart
  • Lonnie Brooks Band
  • Tinsley Ellis
  • E.C. Scott
  • Sandra Hall
  • Sally Weisenburg & Her Famous Sidemen
  • Rooster Alley
  • Chris Stevens & Friends
  • Motor City Josh
  • Dave Weld & Imperial Flames
  • Coal City
  • Blind Dog Willie
  • Talan “T-man” Latz
  • Steve “The Harp” Blues Band
  • Robin Crowe
  • Doktu Rhute
  • Spencer Bohren
  • Jimmy Burns
  • Rocky Lawrence

2009

  • Walter “Wolfman” Washington
  • Bryan Lee & The Blues Power Band
  • Janiva Magness
  • Chris Cain
  • Gas House Gorillas
  • Blind Dog Willie
  • Bruce James Band
  • Deak Harp Blues
  • Catfish Keith
  • Darell Nulisch
  • Matthew Curry Band
  • Jess Hoggard
  • Peoria Select Blues Band
  • Moreland & Arbuckle
  • Kelly Richie Band
  • Kenny Wayne
  • Little Joe McLerran
  • Kent Burnside

2010

  • Johnny Winter Band
  • Gas House Gorillas
  • Grady Champion
  • Eddie Taylor
  • Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings
  • Levee Town
  • Randy Vincent
  • Eddie Show
  • Eddie Van Shaw
  • Hip Pocket
  • Doran & The Soul Mystics
  • Doghouse Blues
  • Memphis Jesse
  • “Road To Memphis”

2011

  • Savoy Brown
  • Kim Simmonds
  • Duke Tomatoe
  • Terrance Simien & The Zydeco Experience
  • John Primer
  • Jimmy Burns
  • Robin Crowe
  • Bob Dorr & The Blue Band
  • Steve “The Harp”
  • Doran & The Soul Mystics
  • Nathan Morgan Trio
  • Brian Dennison
  • Matthew Curry & The Blues Fury

2012

  • Canned Heat
  • Walter Trout
  • Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials
  • Curtis Salgado
  • Duke Robillard
  • Jimmy Thackery &b The Drivers
  • James Armstrong
  • Hurricane Ruth
  • Maurice John Vaugh
  • Dave Weld
  • Dave Chastain
  • Chris Stevens
  • Charlie Hayes
  • Joel Fleming